from Michael Arace of the Columbus Dispatch,
The process started with an incredibly complicated deal — among the team, Nationwide, the convention authority, and city, county and state officials — that took two years to assemble. Under intense pressure, Blue Jackets majority owner John P. McConnell traded power and capital to give his franchise a chance at long-range stability.The Jackets’ new arena lease, and a firmer public-private partnership, placed a team drowning in red ink on firmer ground.
The process received a terrific bilge pumping last week, when the players union signed off on the NHL’s realignment plan. The Jackets, at long last, will head East (pending approval by the league’s governors, which is expected). The move will slash travel costs and diminish competitive disadvantages.It will also boost local television ratings, revenue and viewer interest, if only because most road games will begin at an earlier hour.
The arena deal and realignment are two of th...